Monday, July 28, 2014
Transplant fixes everything --- or not....
I am beyond grateful for Annabelle's chance at life that her new-to-her heart provided. Without it, she would not be here today.
But it's (I think) a common misconception that a heart transplant is a "fix all" for heart problems. After all, her sick heart is gone, replaced by a healthy viral heart that is whole.
But this past week has reminded even me that transplant, while a miracle, introduces a whole different set of struggles.
Annabelle has been struggling with cdiff all summer. While it stinks (and she is more susceptible due to her not-stellar immune system) we can deal with it. It is "minor" in the grand scheme of things, even though it felt major at the time.
But meanwhile...three other transplant kiddos I know are having some very severe struggles, all of which make me very thankful for a relatively minor blimp on the radar.
Little Nicholas received his heart in March of this year, and is currently at Vanderbilt, fighting a type of rejection with all he's got. Over the last few days, he's been in very critical condition, and as of the last update, remains that way.
Sweet Hope has been waiting in Cleveland, OH for a heart these past months, and earlier this week, she got her miracle heart! I watched her mom's facebook page and cheered her on as she received her miracle, but then also watched as her mom posted updates of her struggles post transplant, her body not adjusting well to its new occupant. As I type (Sunday night) she is in very critical condition. She had over an hour of CPR the other day, and they are unsure of the extent of the damage to her brain and kidneys that caused. She's also having regular seizures as a result.
And I just got word that a little boy near and dear to our family's hearts, baby (I mean-- big boy!) Witt, is back in the hospital. Witt was the first child I knew to receive a heart transplant, as we were in the ICU when his heart came, and watched their struggles and triumphs from across the way. I've gotten to know his parents, and they are just amazing people. Well, Witt started running a high fever and was brought in to the hospital. They thought it was pneumonia, but he had no other classic symptoms. Then they thought it might be a dreaded condition called PTLD (basically, transplant induced lymphoma, but it is SO much more complicated than that.) But they have all but ruled that out at this point, going back to probable pneumonia. Regardless, pneumonia stinks in any person, but transplant kiddos have a SUPER hard time kicking stuff like that.
These three sweet ones need lots of prayers this week, and I know their families would appreciate it!
As a note, Annabelle seems to be doing SO much better. While not back to complete normal, she is certainly on her way and the medicine seems to be helping. Mommy is REJOICING and praying very hard that the short bit of summer remaining before school starts would be filled with HEALTHY kiddos and FUN times.
I feel like this is a bit of a bummer of a blog post. My apologies for that, as I try to keep it light hearted most of the time. (I'll do a funny one on Thursday, I promise!) But ya know? I guess that's life, right? Sometimes it is raining, and sometimes the sun is shining.
I'm so thankful God is on his throne and working in all kinds of weather!!!!